Sky in the Running for the No.1 Pick in the 2012 WNBA Draft

The Sky is one of four teams that have a chance to get the No. 1 overall pick in the 2012 WNBA draft. The other three teams in the running are the Tulsa Shock, Minnesota Lynx, and Los Angles Sparks.

The 2012 Draft will be held next April, and the Draft lottery will be held Thursday, November 10, in New York.

The Sky posted a record of 14-20 this past season. Not the record Head Coach Pokey Chatman had in mind, but having one of the top four picks in the Draft may help the Sky improve that record and do something they have not done in Sky history…make the playoffs. In 2011, with the No. 3 pick in the WNBA Draft, the Sky selected Guard Courtney Vandersloot from Gonzaga University. Vandersloot had a phenomenal first year with the Sky. Vandersloot was named to the All-Star Team, All-Rookie Team and set a single season assists record (124) for the Sky.

The Sky has a 17.8 percent chance of getting the No. 1 overall pick in the Draft.

The Shock has the best odds (44.2 percent) to secure the top pick in the Draft. Tulsa had a record of 3-31 this past season--the worst record in the WNBA-- and missed the playoffs for the second consecutive year. In the 2011 Draft, the Shock used the No. 2 overall pick to select Australian center Liz Cambage.

The Minnesota Lynx, which, after winning the Lottery last year and using the No. 1 overall pick to select Maya Moore, earned their first WNBA championship, have the next best odds of winning the 2012 Lottery. Minnesota has a 27.6 percent chance of landing the top pick because it obtained the first round pick of Washington (6-28) after trading forward/center Nicky Anosike to the Mystics two days prior to the 2011 Draft.

The Los Angeles Sparks finished the 2011 season with a 15-19 record, and have similar odds to the Sky with a 10.4 percent chance of getting the No. 1 pick.

WNBA officials and a representative from the accounting firm of Ernst & Young will conduct the Draft Lottery in New York City. The order of selection for the remainder of the first round as well as the second and third round is determined by inverse order of the teams’ respective regular-season records from 2011.

Fourteen balls numbered 1-14 will be placed in a lottery machine and mixed. Four balls will then be drawn to the top to determine a four-digit combination. The team that has been assigned that four-ball combination will receive the No. 1 pick. The four balls will then be placed back into the machine and the process will be repeated to determine the second and third picks. The team that does not win one of the top three picks will be slotted fourth.

There are 1,001 possible combinations when four balls are drawn out of 14, without regard to their order of selection. One thousand of those combinations will be assigned to the four non-playoff teams based on their order of finish in the 2011 regular season. The remaining combination will be unassigned. If the one unassigned combination is drawn, the balls will be placed back into the machine and the process will be repeated until an assigned combination is drawn.